Bangalore : Country’s largest lender State Bank of India recently launched its second edition of its Hackathon – Digitize For Bank (#D4B2017) at the hands of DMD & CIO of SBI, Shri. Mrutyunjay Mahapatra.

Digitize for Bank (#D4B2017) presented by SBI Collaborative Innovation Centre (CIC) is a curated Digital Hackathon on 4 use cases across “Cognitive” theme. They are: Facial Recognition, Signature Recognition, Voice based Authentication and Cheque Truncation Value Enhancers.

Today, Banks face several challenges like identity fraud, problems with signature validation, and lack of multi-form authentication.

Sudin Baraokar, Head Innovation, SBI opines on this occasion, “D4B2017 will leverage digital technologies to automate processes, identify patterns, improve efficiency and help the bank in fraud detection, spotting outliers, reduce validation errors and help simplify and ease customer experience.”

In the phase 1, participants can register their idea during October 11-27, 2017 followed by Hackathon which will start from 1st November 2017 and ends on 12th Nov. The finalists will be called for final interview and can showcase their product between November 20-29, 2017. The winners will be announced on 30th November 2017 and the winning teams will get an opportunity for incubation and acceleration with SBI.

State Bank of India (SBI) the largest commercial bank in India in terms of assets, deposits, profits, branches, customers and employees. The bank has a deposit base of 26.02 lakh crore with CASA ratio of 43.81%. As on June 30, 2017, SBI has an extensive network, with over 23 thousand branches in India and 194 offices in 35 other countries across the world in all time zones. It has a strong network of more than 59 thousand group ATMs. With more than 2.73 lac employees it caters to a customer base of more than 42 crore which includes nearly 2.3 crore Mobile Banking users, over 4 crore Internet Banking users, 1.07 crore State Bank Buddy users. As on March 31, 2017, the bank has installed more than 6 lac PoS terminals, capturing a little over 22% of market share and 34.5 crore State Bank Debit Card holders. SBI has the highest number of Facebook followers across all banks in the world. SBI’s non- banking subsidiaries / joint ventures are market leaders in their respective areas and provide wide ranging services, which include investment banking, life insurance, general insurance, mutual funds, credit cards, factoring services, security trading, etc making the SBI Group a truly large financial supermarket and India’s financial icon.




  • 42% decrease in Indians looking to work in the UK
  • 38% decrease in Indians looking to work in the US

Bangalore : Recent data from Indeed, the world’s No. 1 job site, today said there has been a 38% decrease in Indians looking to move to the US and 42% decrease in Indians looking to work in the UK in the last year. The decrease in the number of Indians looking to move abroad also extends to the Gulf, as evidenced by the 21% decrease in searches to the UAE. The latest report also shows that the prospect of Brexit could be deterring Indian job seekers looking to the UK as countries such as Germany and Ireland have seen an increase in Indians actively looking for jobs. Germany has seen a 10% increase in Indians looking for jobs while Ireland has seen a 20% increase for the same period.

Sashi Kumar, Managing Director, Indeed India
 said “India is one of the world’s largest hubs for IT talent, and historically has seen a steady outflow of IT professionals to countries such as the US, UK and Australia.  This new data shows an apparent reversal of that trend. The steadily growing Indian economy and political uncertainty abroad has persuaded highly skilled Indian talent to stay at home to find jobs and this in turn has fostered a thriving start-up scene.

“According to the research by Indeed there has also been an overall 5% decrease in Indians looking to move abroad in search of job opportunities. On the other hand, job search to India has seen an uptick with a 25% rise in people from the UK. The trend is even more pronounced for the Asia Pacific region, with a 170% increase in interest in moving to India.

“This growing popularity of India as an employment destination is further bolstered by government initiatives such as ‘Make in India’, which offers ease of doing business in India. While it is too early to predict, these figures show a trend of Indian nationals who were working in the UK or the Asia-Pacific region, expressing a desire to return to India,” added Sashi.

Despite the declining figures, the US still tops the list of countries that Indians would like to migrate to, with 49% of Indians searching for jobs overseas looking at the US. The other countries where Indians look to work include UAE (16%), Canada (9%), Great Britain (5%), Singapore(4%), Australia (3%), Qatar (2%), South Africa (1%), Bahrain (1%).


The top 10 countries that continue to remain popular with Indians who are willing to explore job opportunities abroad:

1 United States of America (USA)
2 United Arab Emirates (UAE)
3 Canada
4 Great Britain (UK)
5 Singapore
6 Australia
7 Qatar
8 South Africa
9 Bahrain
10 Kuwait


For the past several decades, the US and UK have been the ultimate destination for Indians who sought better job opportunities and comfortable lifestyles. There were 12,000 Indian immigrants to the United States in 1960. That number rose to 2.4 million by 2015, making Indians the second-largest immigrant group in the US after Mexicans.  The largest single ethnic minority group in Britain are Indians, making up almost one quarter of the total ethnic minority population. There are approximately 1.5 million Indians living in the UK and are the largest foreign-born population group in the UK. Most of the Indian population lives in London, but British Indians can be found in significant numbers throughout the UK.

More people find jobs on Indeed than anywhere else. Indeed is the #1 job site in the world and allows job seekers to search millions of jobs on the web or mobile in over 60 countries and 28 languages. More than 200 million people each month search for jobs, post resumes, and research companies on Indeed, and Indeed is the #1 source of external hires for thousands of companies (sources: SilkRoad & iCIMS). For more information, visit




~ 130 speakers, unique literary events, plenty of children’s programming, interactive art installation, The Red Couch for informal author interactions, music programmes, LitMart for aspiring authors, workshops and more ~

Bengaluru: Bangalore Literature Festival, Bengaluru’s flagship community funded literary event on the cultural calendar of the city, is all set for a sixth edition on October 28 and 29 at the Hotel Lalit Ashok lawns in Kumara Krupa High Grounds, Bengaluru.

Building on the success of over the past five years, this year Bangalore Literature Festival (#blrlitfest) has a “Speak Up, Speak Out” theme and will feature a host of distinguished authors, speakers and artistes including Ramachandra Guha, Perumal Murugan, Paul Zacharia, Ambai, Hardeep Singh Puri, Suketu Mehta, Rahul Dravid, Anil Kumble, NS Madhavan, Girish Karnad, Sonal Mansingh, Gideon Haigh, Twinkle Khanna and others.

Over the years the Bangalore Literature Festival has become the most sought after and must-attend event for readers and writers, with its enriching and stimulating literary sessions, interviews and panel discussions. This year the Festival will witness authors engaging the audi¬ences with diverse themes. Highlights include “Jingoism Vs. Patriotism”, “Death by Litigation – The Perils of Business Reporting”, “How India’s T-20 World Cup Win Changed Indian and World Cricket”, “Mrs. Funnybones” and “Chasing Bin Laden”.

This year too Bangalore Literature Festival sticks to its promise of something for every reader. This includes two full days of children’s programming called ‘Children | Literature | Fun (C | L | F)’ with workshops, storytelling sessions, creative games and more – with a theme that embraces the environment – Every Day Earth Day. C | L | F highlights include sessions by renowned authors such as Ranjit Lal, Reena Puri, Roopa Pai, Anjana Basu and Leela Broome. Workshops and Performances by Kirtana Kumar’s Theatre Lab and Namkampeni Interactive Theatre. Painstakingly curated by Vikram Sridhar, this promises to take not just children but the little kid in every adult too by storm.

International authors at the Festival this year include Australian cricket writer Gideon Haigh, acclaimed South African writer Imraan Coovadia, Sri Lankan humourist Chhimi Tenduf-La and British journalist Adrian Levy. Young authors will be represented by Kanhaiya Kumar, Savi Sharma, Varun Agarwal and others.

The 2017 edition of the Festival will have diverse media personalities and journalists participating, including Bachi Karkaria, Manu Joseph, Jagannathan, Meenal Baghel, Rajdeep Sardesai, Nidhi Razdan, Paranjoy Guha Thakurta, Sindhu S, Sagarika Ghose, Naresh Fernandes, Dhanya Rajendran and Baradwaj Rangan.

This sixth edition of the Festival showcases young talent in Kannada writing with Sahitya Yuva Puraskar winners Shanthi K Appanna, Vikram Hathwar and Abdul Rasheed. Eminent historian Dr. S. Settar will discuss the origin of the Kannada language, and a panel of eminent women autobiographers, including Bhargavi Narayan, Indira Lankesh and the evergreen Dr. Vijaya promise to enthral audiences with their insights.

True to the Festival’s moorings, several city authors are supporting the event and participating in the Festival. Leading names include Ammu Joseph, Rohini Mohan, Harish Bijoor and more.

The Festival has lined up interesting performances including a piano recital by Natallia Kopylova and Liudmila Alizarchyk, music by German poet Jessy James with a band and a sarod concert by Amaan and Ayaan Ali Bangash.

The Bangalore Literature Festival and Atta Galatta, the city-based bookstore and art-literature space, will also present the Atta Galatta–Bangalore Literature Festival Book Prize to honour the best of English writing. Watch out for the shortlist!
The Festival opens at 10 am on Oct 28 and 29. Entry is free, open to all and registration is recommended.

For registration, complete schedule of events, participating author bios and other information check or follow blrlitfest on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

“Every year the festival returns in a new way. This time too we promise you the previously unsaid. Honest, direct conversations coming your way,” says festival director Shinie Antony.

This year too the Festival is anchored by Friends of BLF – a group of eminent citizens of Bengaluru, who firmly believe that the city comes alive in its public spaces, in its arts and culture events that foster meaningful dialogue, enriching discussions and healthy debates; a group whose support has laid the foundation for an independent, community-funded literary event that the city of Bangalore can be proud of and can claim as ‘nammadu‘. Friends of BLF help create – with their generosity, energy and time – this world of words.

About Bangalore Literature Festival
The Bangalore Literature Festival celebrates the creative spirit of Bengaluru and commemorates the literary diversity it offers, bringing it in conversation with the best minds in the world of literature. The 2017 edition of the Bangalore Literature Festival is a two-day literary extravaganza that will bring together some of the biggest names in literature – within and outside India.

The objective of the Bangalore Literature Festival is to put together a literary experience that brings writers – both established and aspiring, readers, publishers, students and young professionals and other stakeholders of the city together on a common platform and create a compelling space for engaging and thought-provoking discussions on literature and life.

The Bangalore Literature Festival is a non-profit run by an eclectic pro bono team of Shinie Antony, V. Ravichandar, Srikrishna Ramamoorthy, Subodh Sankar and Vikram Sridhar, supported by advisors and volunteers.

More information at: //blrlitfest




New Delhi: Union Minister of Science & Technology Dr. Harshvardhan inaugurated Women Bio-tech Incubator at Golden Jubilee Biotech Park for Women Society during IISF, 2017 in Chennai today in the presence of Prof. M. S. Swaminathan, Founder Chairman, Women Biotech Park, and State Minister of Industry, Government of Tamilnadu – Shri M C Sampath.
Dr. Harsh Vardhan today delivered the Conclave Address during the Women Scientist and Entrepreneurs Conclave at IISF 2017. While delivering the Conclave Address Dr. Harshavardhan said that globally there has been a special focus on addressing the issues related to Women in Science and framing policies which support the same. In India we have laid special emphasis on empowerment of women. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has stressed upon the need for special programmes which not only technically empower the women but also create employment opportunities.

In the field of Science and Technology and Entrepreneurship, Indian women have had a major presence over the last 100 years. The first women to receive a medical doctorate degree was Anandibai Joshee in 1885, the first Indian women Doctorate in Basic Science was Janaki Ammal in 1931 and India’s first woman to get a doctorate of science from an Indian university was Asima Chatterjee in 1944. These dynamic women have laid a very strong foundation for women in science in India. In the last few years, there has been a special focus on “Women Empowerment by the Government. The DST and DBT have special schemes to attract women scientists and to provide employment opportunities to the unemployed women scientists. Women Entrepreneurship is a very important activity that has been growing rapidly in last few years. “Start up India”and “Stand up India” announced by Hon’ble Prime Minister are initiatives which offer tremendous opportunities to the women entrepreneurs.

Biotech Park is a good example of a Centre and State Government Partnership. The Minister expressed his confidence that with the support of the State Government it will drive many important initiatives under Start up India and Make in India. A large number of Innovation schemes of the S&T Ministry being operated by DST and DBT and initiatives taken by BIRAC have today created a vibrant innovation ecosystem. More than 1000 Start ups and nearly 200 Women Entrepreneurs have been supported. The Atal Innovation Mission also aims to promote the innovation ecosystem.

The Minister was pleased to know the excellent participation in Women Scientists and Entrepreneurs Conclave. He informed that the Ministry of S& lays special emphasis on North East and has a special program and will be happy to set up a Women Bio-Incubator at North East.

He expressed his confidence that the women scientists would contribute significantly to the growth of the country and fulfill the dream of Hon’ble Prime Minister of “Making a New India”. Women scientists and Entrepreneurs definitely are the Game Changers Driving Science for “Making a New India”.

Dr. Harshvardhan also released a book – Genesis of Biotech Park – on this occasion.

Women Scientists Conclave with the theme “Women Scientist and Entrepreneurs – Game Changers Driving Science for New India” was held as a part of India International Science Congress, 2017 in Chennai. The theme of the Conclave was to motivate young women to pursue science and entrepreneurship and explore new opportunities. The conclave showcased the strengths and activities of women in science and entrepreneurship and provided a platform for the young women scientist and entrepreneurs to interact with experts and peers.

The Conclave is being attended by over 350 Women Scientists, Researchers, Faculty and Entrepreneurs. There is participation from across the country – North East, Uttarakhand, Bihar, West Bengal, Punjab, Kerala, amongst others. There was an exhibition and panels. Many Senior Scientists, Entrepreneurs who are role models shared their experiences. Dr. Soumya Swaminathan, Secretary, Department of Health Research (DHR) and Director General, Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) delivered the keynote address.

Presentations were made in various fields of interest viz., Geoscience, Space and Ocean research. Panel Discussion on “Game Changers Driving Science for New India” was held and the discussion focused on (i) Challenges for taking science as a career and (ii) Opportunities for women in Science, Technology and Entrepreneurship. Presentations were given on “Budding Women Scientists” and “Initiatives of the Govt. of India for Women in Science and Science for Women”.



Over 1.20 lakh weavers and artisans to benefit through ongoing HastakalaSahyogShivirs in 421 handloom-handicrafts clusters

*Parul Chandra

New Delhi: India boasts of a rich tradition of hand-woven textiles and skilfully made handicrafts that draws appreciation and buyers not only from within the country but also abroad. Be it the intricately woven Ikats from Andhra Pradesh and Orissa, the Patan Patolas from Gujarat, the fine Benarasi weaves from Uttar Pradesh, the gossamer-like Maheshwari weaves of Madhya Pradesh or the figurines sculpted in wood or stone from Tamil Nadu–India has this and much more to offer to the world in terms of handlooms and handicrafts.

The weavers and artisans in India toil hard to produce a rich variety of textiles and handicrafts. And yet, the earnings of those weaving magic through the warp and the weft or handicrafts are often not commensurate with the intensive labour, immense skill and cost of raw materials that goes into their making.

Largely based in rural India, weavers and artisans also find market access for their products difficult. As a consequence, they’re dependent on the middleman to sell their products—while they garner substantial profits, the weaver and artisans are left with just a pittance instead of getting a reasonable price.

In order to address the myriad challenges faced by weavers and artisans, the Union Textiles Ministry has been taking numerous steps to assist them. As part of these measures, the ministry is currently holding an 11-day ‘HastkalaSahyogShivir’. The camps which began on October 7 are being held across the length and breadth of the country. The initiative is dedicated to the Pandit Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Garib Kalyan Varsh–the birth centenary of Pandit Deen Dayal is being observed.

The camps have been organised in over 200 handloom clusters and Weavers Service Centres as well as 200 handicraft clusters in the country. They are spread over 372 places in 228 districts to reach out to a large number of weavers and artisans.

The Union Textiles Minister Smriti Irani in a tweet last month had said: “More than 1.20 lakh weavers/artisans will benefit through the HastakalaSahyogShivirs that will be held in 421 handloom-handicrafts clusters.”  Among the states where the camps are being held are Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, Jammu and Kashmir, Jharkhand, Kerala, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Manipur, Mizoram, Nagaland, Odisha, Punjab, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Telengana, Tripura, Uttarakhand, UP and West Bengal.

Well aware of the difficulties a weaver or artisan faces in accessing credit—it is so essential to purchase raw materials for their product or to upgrade their technology, for instance the looms–the Textiles ministry has kept the primary focus of these camps on providing credit facilities to them.

As part of this endeavour, the camps are providing weavers and artisans services such as issuance of credit facilities through the government’s MUDRA (Micro Units Development and Refinance Agency) which provides financial assistance to micro enterprises.

In addition, participants at these camps will also be provided with assistance for technology upgradation under the HathkargaSamvardhanSahayata and to buy modern tool kits and equipment. Under the Hathkarga scheme, the government helps weavers buy new looms by bearing 90 per cent of the cost. Importantly, the camps will also see the Pehchan (Identity) cards being issued to weavers and artisans.

With market access for their products being one of the major hurdles faced by weavers and artisans, expos/craft bazars/buyers-sellers meets too are being held at some of the camps.

Yet another important element of these camps is that a Yarn Pass-Book is being issued to weavers as yarn is the main raw material for weavers.

Further, recognising the importance of education for the children of weavers and artisans, the camps will also be providing assistance on how they can be enrolled into courses run by the National Institute of Open Schooling (NIOS) and IGNOU.

In its efforts to eliminate the middleman, the Textiles Ministry has been assisting weavers and artisans sell their products  directly by helping them to participate in marketing events both in India and abroad through funding under the National Handloom Development Programme.

Furthermore, over the last three years, the Textiles Ministry has provided financial assistance of Rs 151.90 crores to organize 849 marketing events in the country for the benefit of 8,46,900 weavers.

The ‘HastkalaSahyogShivir’ is part of the textiles ministry larger endeavour to improve the lot of weavers and artisans which in turn will give the necessary fillip to these sectors. For instance, it has launched the ‘E-Dhaga’ App which enables weavers to order and track the shipping of yarn and ‘BunkarMitra’ helpline, also for weavers.

The impetus being given to the handlooms and handicraft sectors also recognizes the fact that they make an enormous contribution to the country’s economy and help earn valuable foreign exchange. As part of its endeavour to give a boost to the handloom sector, Prime Minister Modi had launched the first National Handloom Day on August 7, 2015.

The handloom and handicraft sectors are among the largest employment provider in the country, and combinedly next only to agriculture. According to the 2016-17 annual report of the textiles ministry, the handloom and handicraft sectors provided employment to 43.31 lakh and 68.86 lakh persons, respectively. The two sectors also bring in considerable foreign exchange through exports of quality products.

Besides, there is no gainsaying the fact that hand looms and handicrafts are a valuable and integral part of India’s heritage that need to be both preserved and promoted.



Addresses 33rd Raising Day Celebrations of the National Security Guard 

New Delhi: The Vice President of India, Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu has said that the International community has to launch a concerted effort to isolate States which are sponsoring terrorism. He was addressing the 33rd Raising Day Celebrations of the National Security Guard (NSG), in Manesar, Haryana today. The Minister of Education, Government of Haryana, Shri Ram Bilash Sharma, the Director General, NSG, Shri Sudhir Pratap Singh and other dignitaries were present on the occasion.

The Vice President paid homage to the 19 Brave Martyrs of NSG, who made the supreme sacrifice in the line of duty, thereby upholding the highest traditions of valour and sacrifice.

The Vice President said that NSG is a specially-trained, highly skilled and hugely motivated force, tasked with multifarious responsibilities and the entire nation is proud of their achievements. He further said that the National Security Guard is synonymous with bravery, professionalism and extreme dedication. The country will always remember the defining role NSG played in Akshardham, Mumbai and Pathankot attacks and neutralizing the grave threat, performing its tasks with great professional elan, he added.

The Vice President said in recent years, terrorist incidents have increased world over and some of the attacks have occurred at places which never experienced such events and perhaps least expected them. He further said that you are all aware that India is facing the menace of terrorism for the past three decades. We have always given a befitting reply to such anti-national elements, he added.

The Vice President said that there has been a paradigm shift in the modus operandi of our adversaries, wherein the threat is not limited only to border areas, but has manifested in the hinterland also. This requires constant reviewing and enhancement of our operational capabilities, he added.

The Vice President said that there is nothing like good terrorists and bad terrorists and terrorism knows no religion or boundaries and nobody should be allowed to get away with acts of violence in the name of ideology. The Vice President appealed to the United Nations to see the conclusion of a comprehensive convention on suppression of international terrorism, the proposal for which from India is pending since 1996.

Following is the text of Vice President’s address:

Shri Sudhir Pratap Singh, Director General, National Security Guard, Officers and my brave ‘Black Cat’ Commandos.

I am delighted to be part of the 33rd Raising Day Celebrations of the National Security Guard. At the outset, I pay homage to the 19 Brave Martyrs of NSG, who made the supreme sacrifice in the line of duty, thereby upholding the highest traditions of valour and sacrifice.

NSG is a specially-trained, highly skilled and hugely motivated force, tasked with multifarious responsibilities. Be it counter terrorist or counter hijack operations or protection of persons with high threat perception, you have always risen to occasion to ward off the challenges. The entire nation is proud of your achievements. NSG has footprints all over the country and the coming up of the Special Composite Group at Gandhinagar, bears testimony to the fact that the operational reach of NSG has further enhanced.

The National Security Guard is synonymous with bravery, professionalism and extreme dedication. I am certain that all of you must be proud to be a part of this special force, as the nation and people always look to you with awe, hope and trust and feel assured of their safety and well being. This confidence comes from the fact that NSG has delivered results by overcoming all odds, irrespective of the magnitude and the spectrum of challenge.

Over the last 33 years, you have successfully handled several terrorist and hijack situations. The country will always remember your defining role in Akshardham, Mumbai and Pathankot attacks. NSG accepted the challenge and neutralized the grave threat, performing its tasks with great professional elan.

In recent years, terrorist incidents have increased world over and some of the attacks have occurred at places which never experienced such events and perhaps least expected them. Those are the key words—least expected them. That’s how terrorists thrive and try to create mayhem by surreptitiously attacking at unsuspecting places and people. Hence, eternal vigilance is the price of liberty.

It is indeed ironical that as mankind progresses with the aid of technology, terrorists too come up with ways of using it for destroying lives and liberty of the people. The lone wolf attacks and the use of vehicles to mow down people in London, Barcelona and France reflect the need for mounting a heightened surveillance in public places to prevent recurrence of such incidents.

You are all aware that India is facing the menace of terrorism for the past three decades. We have always given a befitting reply to such anti-national elements.

However, recently, there has been a paradigm shift in the modus operandi of our adversaries, wherein the threat is not limited only to border areas, but has manifested in the hinterland also. This requires constant reviewing and enhancement of our operational capabilities.

To this effect, we all must remain committed to embracing the latest technology and develop specialist skills, with an aim to upgrade and hone our operational preparedness.

There is thus a dire need to constantly review, improve tactics and innovate and update strategy to always stay ahead in the game. In other words, to defeat the evil designs of terrorists both men and machines have to outsmart them.

Towards this end, the advancements that you have made in surveillance, firepower and developing counter UAV capabilities are indeed praiseworthy and laudable.

I feel the time has come for the international community to launch a concerted effort to isolate States which are sponsoring terrorism. There is nothing like good terrorists and bad terrorists. Terrorism knows no religion or boundaries and nobody should be allowed to get away with acts of violence in the name of ideology.

I fervently appeal to the United Nations to see the conclusion of a comprehensive convention on suppression of international terrorism, the proposal for which from India is pending since 1996.

It is extremely heartening to see NSG taking giant strides not only in ensuring its own progress but also carrying out Capacity Building, especially of our State Police Forces. This will ensure a synergised national response, to terrorism in our country. Other forces have also immensely benefitted from your Specialised Counter terror tactics, Bomb disposal techniques and from your K9 capabilities. By this measure, you are achieving the dual aim of capacity building, along with nation building and for this I wish to congratulate you.

For a force like NSG, training is the key and it is imperative that you are exposed to the best available training across the globe. I am happy that you have further built upon this repository by sharing the best practices with other Special Forces of India and the world. In the end, I convey my heartiest felicitations to each one of you on the 33rd Raising Day of NSG.

I am sanguine that you will always be committed to your Vision to be ‘A World Class Zero Error Force’. Our wishes and prayers are always with you and I am certain, that you will always put your best foot forward and come out successful in all your endeavours, while serving our great nation.



Project CHAMAN, likely to be completed by March 2018: Shri Singh

New Delhi: Interim report of site suitability study for North East to be handed over to the states by January 2018 for immediate consideration for implementation: Agriculture Minister 

Union Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Minister, Shri Radha Mohan Singh said that in order to provide strategic development to the horticulture sector, so as to increase farmers income, a pioneer project called CHAMAN, has been launched three years back by the Government. This project is being implemented by Mahalanob is National Crop Forecast Centre (MNCFC) using remote sensing technology and is likely to be completed in March 2018. This was told by the Shri Singh in New Delhi today during a presentation on CHAMAN.

Shri Radha Mohan Singh said that the Horticulture sector is one of the major drivers of growth in Agriculture sector. This sector provides nutrient rich crops to the people and better remunerative prices to the farmers thereby augmenting their income. It also provides higher employment opportunities in the primary, secondary and tertiary sectors. Thus it has gained significant prominence in the recent years. It is a matter of pride that India is the Second largest producer of Vegetables and Fruits in the world and is First in the production of Banana, Mango, Lime and Lemon, Papaya and Okra.

Shri Singh informed that CHAMAN is a pioneer project in which remote sensing technique is being used for strategic development of horticulture sector as also to increase the farmers’ income. It gives methodology for preparing reliable estimates of horticulture crops. Union Agriculture Minister said that this methodology will help the farmers to generate better income.

Shri Radha Mohan Singh said that the income of farmers will increase by growing selected crops in the high suitable areas identified under CHAMAN in the current Jhum /waste lands. Besides this, the Post-Harvest damages of farmers would be significantly reduced by creation of desired Post Harvest Infrastructures like cold storages etc. thereby increasing their income. In addition the Geo-Spatial Studies like crop intensification, orchard rejuvenation and aqua-horticulture would further help the farmers’ to grow their horticultural crops in a profitable manner which will help doubling their income.

Union Agriculture Minister informed that it is proposed to hand over the interim reports of North Eastern States Site Suitability Studies to the respective State Governments by January 2018 for immediate consideration. The waste land/ jhum land areas identified for one crop in one district each of North Eastern States, under site suitability studies would be utilised by the State Governments to take up the projects of development of these areas on priority. On completion of this Project, the Geo-Spatial Studies would be conducted in all major states of the country.

Shri Singh told that on completion of this project, the methodology developed for seven important horticulture crops would be made operational in all the States. The remote sensing technology would be extended to other horticulture crops in future.

Shri Radha Mohan Singh also told that apart from these, various flagship programmes of the Ministry such as PMFBY, Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana (PMKSY), Soil Health Card, Rashtriya KrishiVikasYojana (RKVY) etc. are using remote sensing, GIS and GPS tools for their effective implementation.


New Delhi: Footwear Design & Development Institute (FDDI) has been declared an ‘Institute of National Importance’ under Ministry of Commerce & Industry, Government of India. The FDDI bill was passed by the Parliament in July 2017. The Provisions of FDDI Act 2017 have come into force from today, according to the Notification published in The Gazette of India on October 5, 2017.

The Minister of State for Commerce & Industry, Shri C.R. Chaudhary said here today, that the commitment of the Government to resolve the degree issue has culminated in the grant of the status of ‘Institute of National Importance’ to FDDI. With this, the government has also ensured up gradation of FDDI to a position of eminence so as to enable the Institute to effectively serve the Sector/Industry.

To empower the youth of the nation and to help them march alongside the Prime Minister’s Skill Development mission and Make in India initiative, the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Government of India proposed the FDDI INI bill to Parliament. FDDI, after becoming an INI, now has the autonomy to design its courses as per the requirement of the industry, and award its own degree to the students. FDDI can now independently develop and conduct courses leading to graduate and post graduate degrees, doctoral and post-doctoral courses and research in the areas of footwear and leather products design and development and allied fields.

Presently FDDI is imparting skill based graduate and post graduate courses in the fields of footwear, leather goods, retail and management to around 2,500 students across eight campuses spread over India. With the enhancement of the status of FDDI as an Institute of National Importance by the virtue of the FDDI Act, 2017, the institute will now be able to enrol around 2,500 more students in the upcoming admission session, across its 12 campuses, out of which four new campuses will become functional with the next academic session.

FDDI is a premier Institute, serving as a ‘One stop solutions provider’ in footwear, leather and allied industry. Since its inception in 1986, FDDI has been playing a pivotal role in facilitating Indian industry by bridging skill gaps in the areas of footwear, leather, fashion, retail and management. FDDI has been functioning as an interface between the untapped talent and industry and its global counterparts, by fulfilling the demand of skilled man power with its specific curriculum, state of the art laboratories, world class infrastructure and experienced faculty.

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